“A world apart, Cuba is a vibrant and visceral country on the edge of great change. The people who live here are survivors and dreamers in a land where nothing goes to waste and everything is celebrated. The harsh, dilapidated structures of Havana disperse into a lush and rolling countryside dotted with tiny farms and villages where horses and oxen still do the heavy work.
Since Castro’s sweeping Revolution began in 1953, Cuba has struggled economically. For many Cubans, the standards ushered in by Communist ideology are like a persistent pit in the stomach a dull malady that seems bent on censoring their determination and resolve to thrive. I have learned, however, not to underestimate the determination of any Cuban.
Begun in 2018, this series of watercolor paintings explores the interlocking fibers that weave Cubans into their social, political and physical environment. Communism, it seems to me, impacts Cubans like the waves of an ocean. It lifts and carries some, while it smashes others onto the shore. In these paintings, I wanted to depict this range of attitudes and emotions through the expressions, body language and surroundings of these remarkable people.”
- Rance Jones